Do you have a dark room that needs some extra light in its life?
Almost nobody likes gloomy dark rooms. In fact, some recent studies found that the quality of light in our physical environments can have a major impact on our bodies. Eye strain, poor concentration, broken sleep patterns and low mood are just a few side-effects of spending too much time in a poorly lit space.
Unfortunately, not all homes are filled with plenty of natural light, and sometimes you can find yourself stuck with a room that feels more like a cave. And it’s only natural for you to be wanting to brighten things up.
But if making structural changes or going through a major renovation isn’t on the cards, don’t stress.
There are plenty of easy (and wallet-friendly) ways to bring in more light into any dark room!
The below methods are all about creating optical illusions – no major renovations required.
1. Add Light Sources or Adjust the Existing Ones
While a central overhead light fixture works well to create an ambient lighting, it simply isn’t enough to properly illuminate most rooms, especially dark ones. So, you need to add additional sources of light.
Carefully think about where you place light fixtures throughout the space you are working with. For example, in the bedroom you can add table lamps or sconces near the bed side tables. In the living room, think about having a floor lamp or table lamp near the sofa. In the kitchen, track lighting will not only make the space brighter but can also be a great design feature. Also, consider using LED strips to add undercabinet lighting to balance out the shadowing effect of bulky cabinetry. In the bathroom, consider adding a few recessed lights. In fact, recessed lights can go in any room as they tend to distribute light more effectively. This will ensure that each part of the room is adequately lit.
Where possible, try placing lamps and light fixtures so that they shine onto other surfaces to up the ambient light in the room. And note, that yellow lights create warmer, cosier and more intimate atmosphere, while “true white” bulbs will create a brighter, crispier and fresher look.
While it seems obvious that adding ample of light sources will brighten your home, many people are overlooking some easy adjustments that can improve the lighting you already have.
For example, swap your light bulbs for those with higher lumens as lumens, not watts, is the unit of measure that counts.
If you have recessed lights, installing LED versions will dramatically brighten your space. Moreover, LEDs consume less energy for the amount of light they produce, helping you to keep electricity bills down.
Finally, make sure to keep the glass lights clean.
2. Choose the Right Furniture
Not everyone realizes how much visual weight heavily curved, dark and bulky furniture adds to the space. Not only will it make your room look darker by absorbing the light, it will also create a visual clutter making the space look and feel smaller than it actually is.
Try swapping such furniture items for lighter and more streamlined pieces. Using lucite furniture to let more light pass through can be a great option.
3. Strategically Place Mirrors
It’s common knowledge that mirrors can make a small room feel larger, but less people know that they can also make virtually any space feel brighter by bouncing off the light.
Most designers recommend placing a large mirror opposite a window or perhaps arranging an array of smaller ones to reflect more light into the room. You may also choose to hang one opposite a lamp or light fixture to enable even more light to bounce off.
And you don’t have to be limited just to mirrors. For example, try incorporating a side table or a coffee table with a mirrored top in your interior.
4. Mind the Art
If you love art, you will have to save your dark and bulky paintings for a brighter room as this type of artwork tends to absorb the light in the room rather than reflect it. So, if decorating walls is a must, go for light or brightly coloured paintings or even mirrors as discussed in the point above.
5. Go White
White is known to be the most reflective colour, bouncing the light indirectly back to other surfaces. So, if you want to make a real difference, it’s time to stock up on white paint and grab a paint roller.
Start by painting walls and ceiling white. And make sure to pick the right white: don’t go for a glossy look as it can create glare. Instead, choose matte finishes as they reflect light evenly in every direction. Another hack is to paint wall trims and mouldings in a lighter colour than the walls. This will make walls appear father back, adding visual space to the room.
And you don’t have to stop with just ceiling and walls. Consider bringing in other white elements, such as furniture, linen or art.
As a bonus, a white room will create a perfect canvas for you to add any accent colours you like. For example, adding different shades of blue will help create a nice beachy look, while adding black and gold will give your room a luxury feel.
6. Say ‘Yes’ to Greenery
The natural feel from the indoor plants (in this case, the bigger the better), especially against crisp white walls can really brighten up a dark room. You might want to check our other article where we talk about the best plants to grow in a dark room. It is best to use a white vessel that blends well with the walls and other white surfaces to ensure that the plants don’t feel too bulky.
7. Add Light Rugs
While dark hardwood floors are a popular and beautiful feature of many contemporary homes, they can drain a lot of light, especially in darker rooms. Rugs in lighter tones will help break up this type of flooring and make your room feel more airy.
8. Are Your Windows Clean?
Probably the most obvious item on this list, but simply keeping your windows clean can have a major impact on how much light goes into the room. So, if you haven’t cleaned your windows for a while, it’s about time you get all that dirt and dust off them!
If you have any trees or bushes growing near your windows, make sure to trim them regularly (if possible) so they don’t block the sunlight.
9. Sing a ‘Goodbye’ to Thick, Dark Curtains
They absorb so much light and make your room look like a vampire’s dungeon! Allow sunshine to spread through the space by choosing translucent, light-weight material of lighter shades.
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The EYEON Property Inspections Team
At EYEON Property Inspections, we help you buy and sell with more confidence.